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Food Business - Guidance

It is now a legal requirement for all food businesses, no matter how large or small, to have a written food safety management system in place sometimes known as HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points).
The Food Standards Agency has produced a free guide on how to do this called Safer Food, Better Business. The pack is easy to follow and gives small businesses a step by step guide on how to comply with the new law. The information is also available as a DVD and in numerous languages.

For a FREE copy of the Safer Food, Better Business pack or the DVD, please contact the Food Standards Agency (http://www.food.gov.uk/) on 0845 606 0667 or e-mail: foodstandards@ecgroup.co.uk

If you are thinking of setting up a food business, there is a large amount of planning to do first. As well as making sure that your food premises is constructed properly, with good design, layout and hygiene, you need to make sure that you and your staff are trained and that you have proper systems in place to ensure that the food you sell is safe and of good quality this applies whatever type of food business you run.

Our booklet 'Starting up or running a food business', attached below, gives general advice to new and existing businesses and includes a list of recommended publications and leaflets. The booklet is also available on cassette tape in several community languages, contact the Food Safety Team for details.

We also produce a version aimed at those involved in 'Providing food in full time or sessional day care for children', also attached below.

Most types of food business need to be registered with the local authority 28 days before you start operating. Registration is free and cannot be refused. See our page on Food Premises Registration for more information on how to register. Some food businesses which manufacture certain types of meat or milk products to sell on a wholesale basis need separate approval, contact our Food Safety Team for more information.

We are happy to provide information and guidance to help you comply with food safety law but can and do take legal action against traders for food related offences.

The Food Standards Agency also produces a large number of leaflets, posters and information packs which provide useful information for food businesses. Many are free of charge and available in community languages. The Food and Drink Foundation also produces a great deal of helpful information.